I see Lucky already beat me to the punch with this, but hey…it’s holiday party season and I’ve been celebrating. I received an email this evening from US Airways entitled “Dividend Miles Program Changes” and thought “oh boy.” Honestly, the first thing I thought was they’ve probably dropped the 2 checked bag benefit for Silver members like United and Delta, and of course, that’s exactly what they did. But they also announced a change that I think was an honest to goodness enhancement.

Beginning February 15, 2012, US Airways is introducing a mileage-based Dividend Miles mileage upgrade scheme, and I think it’s a good thing. For as little as 5,000 miles, you can upgrade your flight to First Class, and better yet, Preferred Members are exempt from any co-pays for mileage funded upgrades. You can review the details of this change and others here. Of course, there’s one other thing. The bogus “quick ticketing” window for award travel is being pushed out from 14 to 21 days, so you’ll pay a fee of $75 dollars for ticketing an award trip within 3 weeks of travel unless you are at least a Gold Preferred member.

This makes me wonder if American will make changes to its baggage allowance for AAdvantage Gold members. I think there’s at least a chance that they don’t match while they’re in bankruptcy, but who knows. In truth, I rarely check bags, and if I do, it’s usually not more than one, so this really doesn’t impact me. And I’m happy to see the mileage-based upgrade awards. I think that’s a real enhancement….not an “enhancement.”